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  • Name: Harriet Swinson
  • Job Title: ACA Trainee
  • Location: London
  • University: Exeter
  • Degree: Biochemistry
  • Areas of Specialism: Audit and Assurance
HW Fisher

Why did you choose a job in this sector/profession?

I graduated without a firm idea of which profession I wanted to pursue. I knew I needed something that would be challenging and provide plenty of scope for growth, specialisation and continuous development of skills and knowledge. My mum is a qualified accountant and she had a wealth of information to provide about the profession. After discussions about what might suit me, I got quite excited about the prospects within this sector and realised it ticked all my boxes for the type of career I was seeking.

How did you get your job at HW Fisher?

A friend mentioned the name to me (who worked in another department) so when I came across the name again when researching firms, I felt comfortable knowing someone else had already recommended HW Fisher. I applied, which involves answering a series of questions about yourself. I was invited to a group interview which was a really enjoyable experience. The staff were very welcoming and I felt comfortable being myself and interacting in the group scenarios. I was invited back for a one-to-one interview with a Partner followed by an office tour with a current trainee. I instantly recognised HW Fisher to be a friendly place with an exciting buzz to the office. I was happy to accept the job!

What skills are useful in this sector/profession?

Key skills I have found useful working in Audit include good maths and English skills, being proactive and being comfortable using professional language. I also think being inquisitive and having attention to detail is useful when it comes to professional scepticism and working on audit files. Above all, I think the most important one is good communication skills – you are dealing with clients and working closely with supervisors and managers so tailoring your communication is very important.

Do you have any advice for anyone wanting to enter the profession?

Do plenty of research of what the ACA involves and its requirements. If you can, speak to someone who works in the profession and has gone or is going through it. This gave me a lot more comfort and understanding which enabled me to ensure it was the right role for me. I would also recommend you go with your gut when it comes to being yourself in the application and interview process, it’s just as important you find the right place for you!

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